By Dr. Manika Khanna
The most recent National Family Health Survey shows that India’s national total fertility rate (TFR) has decreased to below 2.0 for the first time (NFHS). This troubling data is thought to have a significant contribution from infertility. A disturbed biological clock that affects mood and stress levels, sleep and eating problems, diabetes, tuberculosis, air pollution and exposure to environmental pollutants, excessive alcohol and tobacco use, overexertion, etc. are major risk factors for infertility in both sexes.
Gaudium IVF, a fertility treatment facility, recognised for utilising the most cutting-edge reproductive technologies, has made a stunning discovery in determining that 40 per cent of men, 40 per cent of women, and 20 per cent of both combined are responsible for infertility cases in India.
Dr. Manika Khanna, an infertility specialist and laparoscopic surgeon and founder of Gaudium IVF while commenting on the major contributing factors of infertility in men and women said, “Infertility is rapidly rising among men due to their increased stress levels. We’ve dealt with many such cases of male infertility across India. In states like UP and Bihar, the prevailing use of tobacco adds up to a major factor.
Whereas in urban metro cities, disrupted Circadian Rhythm (i.e., biological clock of the body) due to night shifts and excessive pressure of meeting targets & deadlines in Corporates, is causing sleep and mood disorders often affecting their mental health. In women, fast declining ovarian reserve is leading to a poor and decreased egg number & quality. Tuberculosis (TB), PCOD, Hormonal disturbances, Endometriosis, higher intake of preservatives etc., are some factors of immediate concern.”
According to the research, every couple is unique, thus their causative variables, success prospects, and fertility treatment journeys all differ noticeably. In Tier 11 and Tier 111 cities across the nation as well as metro areas, there are several societal barriers that must be overcome that link the treatment of infertility to social taboos & misconceptions. The odds of a couple becoming pregnant might be significantly increased with the safe method of fertility therapy.
More people will eventually open up about their reproductive concerns and discuss them with the IVF professionals as awareness of fertility treatment grows. This steadily increased self-assurance would help a lot in overcoming the infertility problems that most Indian couples face.
“In my experience of treating infertility in over 20,000 couples, not just patients in India but also from US and Europe, I’ve observed that most people are not adequately aware about the risk factors and even more so are confused as they become overwhelmed by the information and data available online. Therefore, I strongly advise them to only refer to the credible sources or educate themselves with the consultation of IVF experts. In last decade, there’s been a great deal of advancement and notable research that has happened in this field of medical science. What applies to the western population might not work well with the Indian race. Our geography, climate etc., everything counts when it comes to our body. So always consult with your expert doctors to reverse your lifestyle disorders and treat infertility,” further added Dr. Khanna.
(Dr. Manika Khanna is an IVF surgeon)